Mild glucose intolerance in pregnancy may be linked to increased CV disease risk

December 1, 2009

Mild glucose intolerance during pregnancy may herald cardiovascular disease, according to the results of a retrospective, population-based cohort study in 435,700 Canadian women.

Mild glucose intolerance during pregnancy may herald cardiovascular disease, according to the results of a retrospective, population-based cohort study in 435,700 Canadian women.

Compared with those who were not given the test because they had a normal result on a glucose challenge test, women in the study who did not have diabetes but who were administered an oral glucose tolerance test because of an abnormal result on a 50-g glucose challenge test were almost 20% more likely within the 12.3-year median follow-up period to be admitted to a hospital for acute myocardial infarction, coronary bypass, coronary angiogram, stroke, or carotid endarterectomy (adjusted hazard ratio [HR], 1.19; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.02-1.39; P=.03).

The study included women in Ontario, Canada, between the ages of 20 and 49 years who delivered a live fetus between April 1994 and March 1998 and did not have pregestational diabetes. Approximately 350,000 of the women did not receive an oral glucose tolerance test because they had a normal result on a challenge test. About 72,000 women received an antepartum oral glucose tolerance test because of an abnormal result on a glucose challenge test, and almost 14,000 women were diagnosed with gestational diabetes. All of the women were followed for a mean of 12.3 years.

Retnakaran R, Shah BR. Mild glucose intolerance in pregnancy and risk of cardiovascular disease: a population-based cohort study. CMAJ. 2009;181(6-7):371-376.